Flashback: Fall 1960 Primetime

Continuing our look at the Fall 1960 primetime TV schedule, we move on to Monday nights.

Fall 1960 Primetime Television: Monday
All Times Eastern

Net 7:30PM 8PM 8:30PM 9PM 9:30PM 10PM 10:30PM
ABC Cheyenne/Sugarfoot/Bronco Surfside 6 Adventures in Paradise Peter Gunn
CBS To Tell The Truth Pete and Gladys Bringing Up Buddy The Danny Thomas Show The Andy Griffith Show Hennesey Face The Nation
NBC Riverboat Tales of Wells Fargo Klondike Dante The Barbara Stanwyck Show Jackpot Bowling

The Alphabet Network’s Monday night lineup in 1960 started out with a Western wheel featuring 3 rotating series: Cheyenne, Sugarfoot (in it’s final season) and Bronco. Cheyenne starred Clint Walker and was TV’s first hour-long western.

Surfside Six aired next. This premise of the show was a Miami Beach detective agency based on a houseboat. It was actually a sequel to (or perhaps a retooled version of) the 1959 series Bourbon Street Beat, a show about a land-based detective agency in New Orleans. The Van Williams character Kenny Williams appeared in both series.

Rounding out ABC’s Monday night schedule: Adventures in Paradise and Peter Gunn. The former was created by author James Michener, the latter by producer-director Blake Edwards. Detective series Peter Gunn was in its third and final season, having moved over from NBC.

Monday nights on CBS started out with classic game show To Tell The Truth, followed by a pair of new sitcoms.

Pete and Gladys starred future Dragnet and M*A*S*H cast member Harry Morgan. This show was a spinoff of long-running 1950s sitcom December Bride. Bringing Up Buddy was a comedy created by the team of Joe Connelly and Bob Mosher. The duo had great success with Leave It To Beaver and (later) The Munsters, but Bringing Up Buddy lasted only a single season.

The Fall 1960 CBS Monday comedy block continued with The Danny Thomas Show and the premiere of what would become a classic: The Andy Griffith Show.

The military comedy-drama Hennesey aired next, with former child star Jackie Cooper both starring and producing. Face The Nation (a repeat of the previous morning’s episode?) wrapped up the night.

Westerns were in their prime back in the early 1960s. NBC’s Monday night lineup led off with a 2-hour block, including Riverboat, Tales of Wells Fargo and Klondike. Riverboat starred Darren McGavin, well-known to modern generations as the crusty dad in the classic holiday movie A Christmas Story.

NBC’s Monday westerns were followed by a new series from Peter Gunn creator Blake Edwards. Howard Duff played Dante, a gambler-turned-nightclub-owner. This gamble didn’t pay off for NBC, as it was cancelled the following spring.

Wrapping up the night were The Barbara Stanywyck Show, an anthology series, and Jackpot Bowling Starring Milton Berle. Both of those shows also ended in 1961.

Uncle Milty and bowling made for an interesting combination! Here’s an early 1961 episode on YouTube: